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An Optimization Approach to Area-Based Forest Pest Management Over Time and Space

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This paper discusses spatial optimization approaches to managing aggressively reproducing and dispersing pests. The relevant land planning area is divided into cells, and pest growth and dispersal across those cells are accounted for in integer programs that include choice variables for applying control treatments to those cells. Two model formulations are developed and demonstrated in a simple case example: one that assumes no limit to host capacity and one that assumes a limit to host capacity accumulated over time. The formulation with no host capacity limit is shown to be potentially unrealistic if control treatments are not limited. Different objective functions and amounts of control treatment result in optimal strategies that vary from immediate containment near the pest's origin to delayed containment at an area away from the pest's origin. Both formulations are difficult to solve, reflecting the exploratory nature of this paper. For. Sci. 43(1):121-128.

Keywords: Integer programming; pest dispersal; spatial analysis; spatial optimization

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Acting Assistant Director for Research, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, USDA Forest Service, 240 West Prospect Street, Fort Collins, CO (970-498-1859;, Fax: 970-498-1660)

Publication date: 1997-02-01

More about this publication?
  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2015 Impact Factor: 1.702
    Ranking: 16 of 66 in forestry

    Average time from submission to first decision: 62.5 days*
    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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